If you’re raising a child who has ADHD, you probably spend a lot of time focusing on his weak points — intentionally or not. There’s nothing wrong with trying to work on your child’s impulsivity or lack of focus — in fact, it’s important for parents to do so.
But focusing too intently on your child’s shortcomings may be doing a number on his self-esteem. How can you keep him believing in himself while also respecting the rules?
Nagging doesn’t work. Neither does yelling or spanking.
Why? These punishments only tear down children — which is particularly counterproductive for kids with ADHD.
So how can you boost your child’s self-esteem — and still enforce the rules? Start with these positive parenting techniques.
1. Be a behavior detective. Pay close attention to what your child does well. Find ways to extend those accomplishments to other areas.
2. Use the right words at the right time. The key to effective praise is timing. Lauding every action will seem phony. Offer authentic encouragement when your child truly succeeds.
3. Set up a rewards system. Reward successes with gold stars that your child can cash in for a reward. This gives your child real-world goals and long-term motivation.
4. Expand your definition of success. Straight A’s aren’t the only measure of intelligence or talent. Your child may be a natural artist, or a four-star chef in the making.
5. Discipline fairly and consistently. Positive parenting isn’t giving your child a free pass. It’s consciously noting the good alongside the bad – even when punishment is necessary.
Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.
More articles on EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONS COACHING (mrmizrahi.com)